Weight Loss Surgery and Gastric Sleeve Dumping Syndrome

 

What Is Gastric Dumping Syndrome

Causes of Gastric Dumping Syndrome

Gastric Dumping Syndrome is a common bariatric surgery issue, specifically with Gastric Sleeve and Gastric Bypass.  After having weight loss surgery the way a person eats changes dramatically.  Gone are the large meals because the stomach is reduced by approximately eighty to eighty-five percent leaving only a sleeve or tube that is the shape of a banana.  The new stomach you have after gastric sleeve surgery does function normally so you do not have as many food restrictions but you just cannot eat as much.

 

What is gastric dumping syndrome and why do you get it?

 

This is the problem that can develop, especially if there are foods eaten that are have a high content of sugar.  It is also referred to as rapid gastric emptying.  It is very common to have this after having gastric sleeve surgery.  Normally a person will experience it after eating but in some cases it will happen one to three hours later.  There are some people who have gastric dumping syndrome at both times.

 

When you have had gastric sleeve surgery the opening that is between your stomach and small intestine has been removed.  The opening at stomach, called the pylorus acted as a brake before surgery to help your stomach empty slowly.  Since there is no longer a “brake” the stomach contents just rushes into your small intestine. As a result your body reacts by adding a big amount of gastric juices to your small intestine.

 

What are the symptoms of gastric dumping syndrome?

 

Gastric dumping syndrome is actually a group of symptoms.  Some of these symptoms can include:

 

  • Gastrointestinal
    1. Nausea
    2. Vomiting
    3. Abdominal cramps
    4. Diarrhea
    5. Fullness feeling

 

  • Cardiovascular
    1. Flushing
    2. Feeling lightheaded and/or dizziness
    3. Rapid heart rate and/or heart palpitations

 

If a person has gastric dumping syndrome one to three hours after eating there are other symptoms that can happen.  These later symptoms are caused by dumping a large amount of sugar into their intestine.  The body responds by releasing a large of amount of insulin which is used to absorb this extra sugar.  This can cause hypoglycemia, which is a low level of sugar in your body.  These symptoms can include:

 

  • Hunger
  • Sweating
  • Feeling lightheaded and/or dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Fainting
  • Rapid heart rate and/or heart palpitations

 

In conclusion

 

Doing a study on more than one thousand people who have had gastric sleeve surgery, all have experienced gastric dumping syndrome at some point in time.  Two-thirds had the early symptoms while the other third had the later symptoms.  There were a few who had both symptoms.  As you can see, it is a common problem after having weight loss surgery.  It is not a life threatening condition and can be easily remedied by changing their eating habits such as

 

  • Eat smaller meals
  • Avoid drinking anything with meals
  • Limit your intake of drinks and food with a high sugar content
  • Increase the amount of fiber in your diet
  • Stay away from foods that are acidic
  • Lie down at least ten to fifteen minutes after eating